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Alabama antievolution bill dies

AlabamaHouse Bill 923 was among the hundreds of bills that died in the Alabama legislature "because they did not pass in the house where they were introduced," the Associated Press (May 7, 2008) reports. The latest in a string of "academic freedom" bills aimed at undermining the teaching of evolution in Alabama, HB 923 purported to protect the right of teachers in the state's public schools (including both K-12 and colleges and universities) to "present scientific information pertaining to the full range of scientific views in any curricula or course of learning," especially with regard to topics that "may generate controversy, such as biological or chemical origins." The bill also purported to address the rights of students, providing that "no student in any public school or institution of higher education ... shall be penalized in any way because he or she may subscribe to a particular position on any views." In 2004, a cosponsor of a previous version of the bill, SB 336, told the Montgomery Advertiser (February 18, 2004), "This bill will level the playing field because it allows a teacher to bring forward the biblical creation story of humankind."